By Jess Osbaldeston
The RSPCA has launched an investigation after a fox was beaten, kicked and thrown from a top floor window by Kingston University students.
The fox was found seriously injured outside Ama-gi nightclub in Kingston, dragged more than a mile back to Seething Wells halls of residence where it was videoed being kicked in the head, thrown from a top story window and disposed of in a bin.
Calie Rydings from the RSPCA said “This sounds like a shocking incident, that would have caused a great deal of pain and distress to the animal involved,” continuing “If it is proven this did take place, then those involved have committed a very serious offense and, if found guilty, will face a £20,000 fine and/or six months in prison.”
A “horrific” attack
The violence took place in the early hours of Sunday October 2, after a barbeque at halls moved to clubs in Kingston and there have been questions raised as to whether the fox was in fact dead or alive.
Another student, who lives in Seething Wells and is friends with those involved, said “One guy kicked the fox in the head and blood went everywhere.”
“You can still see the blood stains on the carpet. Then they chucked it out of the window and put it on a car with a fag in its mouth.
“It’s just horrendous, you can’t even imagine how much they’d had to drink. I mean it’s just not normal behaviour.”
“It’s too early in the term to be making enemies, but what they did is so horrific I can’t just keep quiet.”
The University has launched an investigation into the incident, sending a letter around Seething Wells in conjunction with a security guard speaking to students directly.
The day after the incident, the accommodation’s security guards visited the flats and said the resident students would be fined if they didn’t tell them what they knew about the affair.
“He told us that the fox was screaming in agony, but I don’t know if he was just telling people that to try and scare them into talking or whether someone had already reported what had happened.”
Investigation by university
A first year student, who also wishes to remain anonymous, saw a video of the abuse on a friend’s phone.
“The way they treated the fox was just disgusting and horrible. To think that someone would do it, let alone video it is just appalling.
“They hurled the poor thing around like a rag doll and dropped it out of a window, throwing it onto a car laughing as though it was all just a big joke to them,” he said.
“Unfortunately everyone deleted the video once the university started investigating so there isn’t any hard evidence of what happened and who was involved but I hope they get caught, they deserved to be punished as severely as possible.”
There are conflicting reports with one student claiming: “the fox was already dead but they thought it was just hurt and took it to the top floor to try and give it CPR. When they realised it was dead they got really freaked out and chucked it out of the window. Afterwards they didn’t think they could just leave it there so they put it in the food waste bin as it wasn’t glass and wasn’t cardboard.”
A university spokeswoman told The River: “Kingston University takes good student behaviour extremely seriously and has student disciplinary procedures in place which are stringently enforced. In addition residents in University Halls sign a contract and can be given notice to quit if they don’t adhere to expected standards of behaviour.
“The University is aware of an incident involving a dead fox that was apparently found near the Seething Wells hall and brought on to the campus during the first weekend in October. The University is concerned about any possible disrespectful behaviour and is currently carrying out an investigation into what happened.”
If anyone has any information on the fox attack, they are urged to call the RSPCA in confidence on 0300 1234 999.